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Some human rights organizations are protesting the use of these techniques.
That leads me to think Rory may be right, unless J.O comes on to say otherwise.
Been reviewing some tapes of NHB competitions. Seems that leg/foot locks and holds are producing perhaps more injuries before a defender can tap out. My guess is that such injuries can be attributed to a couple of factors: The adrenalized state of the fighters which leads to greater brute force and quick applications to prevent counters from another skilled fighter. The strength of the leg joints but their lack of flexibility relative to the arm joints encourage fighters to resist more in defense and the nage/tori to torgue more with the body. When the leg joints go, they go quick.
Nevertheless, these leg locks are valuable techniques to learn and disagree with dropping them. Most folks are quick to defend against arms, torso and head but seem less aware of their legs. Thus, they offer another chance for a defender who may be literally and figuratively "down." Learn these techniques but do so with care. Learn faster by going slower.
[This message has been edited by david (edited December 17, 2000).]